Transparency in the Workplace – What it is and How to Encourage Transparency in the Workplace

Transparency is an essential part to any workplace’s success. And rightfully so! It’s something that modern workers value. Afterall, working for a company and having no idea what the company objectives are, what upper management is doing or where money is being spent can make team members feel like aliens in their own workplaces. With a lack of transparent communication leading to 46% of employees seeking new jobs, it is clear that transparency is an essential part of any workplace’s strategy.

AllyBot understands the importance of inclusion in the workplace and we’re dedicated to ensuring everyone in a team feels accepted and valued. So, in this article, we’re going to explain the importance of transparency in the workplace and give you advice on how you can achieve it in your own teams.

What is Transparency in the Workplace? 

Workplace transparency is open and genuine communication between the leadership and employees in a work setting. Both leadership and employees have different modes of transparency. Leadership will commit to sharing expectations, feedback, setbacks, mistakes, revenue, and more. Employees will ask questions, and share ideas and challenges.

Why is Transparency in the Workplace Important? 

Genuine relationships

Transparent communication encourages trust, which leads to the building of authentic relationships in the workplace. Genuine and healthy relationships are essential for a thriving workforce. When you foster consistent communication styles for everyone at work, it helps to make everyone feel comfortable and heard. This ensures you can solve any issues without difficulty.

Increased employee engagement

According to a 2013 survey conducted by Tiny Pulse, workplace transparency is the number one contributor to employee happiness. Additionally, research from the Harvard Business Review revealed that 70% of employees feel the most engaged within their organization when the administration is intentional about updating staff and openly communicates the company’s strategy. With higher employee engagement, you get a higher-performing workforce. 

Psychological safety

Workplace transparency promotes psychological safety in employees because they can freely share their ideas, opinions, and insights. This helps you to efficiently share feedback and ensure that it gets internalized with enthusiasm and a clearer sense of motivation. 

Enhances team and cross-functional collaboration

When workplace communication is high, overall collaboration improves to an impressive level. This is even more beneficial for hybrid and remote workplaces as employees spend 50% more time in collaborative work. Additionally, transparency in communication helps ensure the team stays aligned so that tasks are completed smoothly and effectively. 

How to Encourage Transparency in the Workplace

Now that we’ve seen how transparent communication can benefit your workplace, here are some tips on implementing it for your team. 

  1. Hire People Who Respect Transparency

As much as you can teach your team members how to communicate openly, recruiting those who already see workplace transparency as a priority is just as effective. This way, they can elevate the standards of your workplace from the beginning without you having to spend as much time on communication training. 

Hire people who care about and encourage openness with other team members, regardless of ranking, because they know it helps with efficiency. Avoid people who are afraid to speak up or prefer hiding the truth, as it’s harder to trust them when completing tasks or dealing with clients. 

  1. Speak Honestly

Speaking honestly in the workplace doesn’t mean that you communicate to the detriment of others. It mainly focuses on explaining your ideas and feelings on a particular subject to create a positive solution. 

Simply state your genuine emotions on a subject with an explanation as to why you feel that way, so it’s easier for your team members to understand. Honesty is valuable in a workplace because if someone needs help, they can express it at the right time so that nobody falls behind and compromises the overall goals of your organization. 

  1. Ask Questions

Employees should feel encouraged to ask questions openly. Asking relevant questions shows a sense of humility and a willingness to learn and improve. On the side of leadership, it’s crucial that you build a safe space for employees to ask questions without judgment. 

You want to encourage a consistent learning environment in the workplace because it helps everyone grow. 

  1. Encourage Open Communication

Communication needs to be consistent in order to improve. Here are some ways to encourage open communication:

  • Hold weekly meetings with the intent to communicate any difficulties or even successes that team members are experiencing
  • Introduce workshops that foster healthy communication and collaboration between different departments of the workplace
  • Encourage open conversations during the workday so people get used to sharing helpful knowledge and information
  • Stay open to suggestions that team members may have by implementing a channel for anyone who wants to contribute
  • Encouraging team events like going to lunch together helps to break down communication barriers, foster a sense of trust, and encourage working relationships

Encouraging open communication in remote teams is equally important, as working online can sometimes isolate members from their teams. And in promoting open communication, you’ll want to ensure that every member of your team feels included. 

Adding Allybot to your remote communications (like Slack) can help companies that value diversity and equity, in creating a more inclusive workspace. Language should never be a barrier for your employees, so we provide more inclusive suggestions for over 400+ non-inclusive terms. After all, inclusive teams are high-performing teams! 

  1. Encourage Honest Feedback & Act on It

You can encourage honest feedback within your team by demonstrating it in leadership roles. Show that you’re open to constructive criticism by acting on relevant input provided by your employees. In doing this, you show that you care about their insights, and you can empower them to perform better for your organization. 

You can also introduce training sessions focusing on how constructive criticism is given and received. This can open communication channels between regular employees and those in leadership roles, which can help everyone perform better, as they’ll receive feedback that they can act on.  

  1. Make Information Easily Accessible

It can be incredibly frustrating for employees if they’re in the dark about company processes, department projects, or those in management. It can make them feel isolated from the rest of the organization, disillusioning some employees and increasing turnover rates. 

Making this information accessible to all members within a company is crucial if you want to create transparency in the workplace. Informed employees feel more connected to their places of work and can help foster feelings of loyalty.

  1. Create Communication Channels

It should be clear where and to who each team member turns when they need certain information.

Consider workflow tools to help make communication smoother between different company departments. Check out the tools below, which will help you share messages, announcements, and resources with your team:

If you’re using Slack, consider AllyBot as an add-on! Allybot is a Slack app that looks out for over 400 non-inclusive words and provides private educational messages in your workspace in the form of suggestions if it finds non-inclusive language

  1. Know Where to Draw the Line

It’s important to emphasize that transparency shouldn’t be about knowing everyone’s business. The intent should always be progression and improvement and making sure that everyone has useful information to help them do their jobs in the best way. 

There is such a thing as too much transparency, so it’s okay to keep information such as employee salaries, individual performance reviews, and other sensitive information private. 

Wrapping Up

The benefits transparency has in the workplace are almost innumerous. You can build trustworthy working relationships, improve motivation and efficiency, and ensure that team members are able to tackle issues with clarity. If you want to create an even stronger and more positive working environment, AllyBot can help you search through over 400 non-inclusive terms in your Slack communications. You’ll be able to create a more inclusive workplace that encourages everyone to do their best. Try it for free today to see how your workplace can flourish!